[IronPython] how to make zlib available?

Michael Foord fuzzyman at voidspace.org.uk
Fri May 28 01:17:54 PDT 2010

On 28/05/2010 01:25, Brandon Craig Rhodes wrote:
> Hey, everyone!
> I am helping a client develop a new application that people will run on
> Windows machines (among other places).  It occurred to us that third-
> party developers will be wanting to extend his application by writing in
> "familiar" languages like Visual Basic or C#.  The "Python for .NET"
> project, which would have been one potential way to call third-party C#
> code, looks to have been rather moribund for the last three years, so I
> hesitated to recommend that we try it.
> But I remembered how many positive tweets and URLs about IronPython I
> have read over the last few months, and so I have convinced the client
> to give me a day to explore getting the application running under
> IronPython!
> The first obstacles fell quickly, but now I am encountering a serious
> obstacle: "zlib" is needed, and not only does something so basic not
> come with IronPython (is it a licensing thing?), but my normal Python
> installation in C:\Python26 does not seem to provide it as a separate
> DLL - it must be built right into the Python executable, I guess since
> the import mechanism itself might sometimes need it?
> There seems to be a Windows-specific version of "zlib" available here:
> http://bitbucket.org/jdhardy/ironpythonzlib/
> But I can't get it working either.  Its binary distribution's
> "IronPython.Zlib.dll" file gets completely ignored by IronPython, so far
> as I can tell, if I put it on my "sys.path"

With that dll on sys.path, try:

import clr

Once you have successfully added a reference to the assembly you should 
then be able to import from it.



> - but maybe that's because
> I'm using the most recent IronPython, "IronPython 2.6 for .NET 4.0" (as
> its "C:\Program Files" directory styles itself)?  I have then attempted
> to compile it myself, by installing Visual Studio Express and then
> finding and running the "msbuild" command like this:
> C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\msbuild.exe IronPython.zlib.csproj
> I mean, I'm not actually sure that command is meaningful, but I saw it
> somewhere on Stack Overflow and it at least looks like it tries to
> compile something.  But the result is an utter failure.  For one thing,
> it can't find absolutely anything mentioned in the "csproj" file, whose
> crazy "<HintPath>" paths are, well, crazy!  Who on earth has these
> libraries sitting in locations under a "Bin" directory?  Anyway, I tried
> to repair some of the "<HintPath>" elements by hand, and got a little
> further, but now I'm somewhere in a tangled forest of incompatibility
> involving the version number of something called "System.Core" (which
> not only sounds important, but is declared by the error message to be a
> "referenced assembly" which is impressively polysyllabic).
> So:
> 1. What do *you* guys do every day when you need "zlib"?
> 2. Should its binary distro work with .NET 4.0 and I'm not trying hard enough?
> 3. If I need to compile it, how do I make the "csproj" file work on a
>     system where things are not located in exactly the same places they
>     are on jdhardy's system?
> Thanks for any pointers - I would love to get this app running on
> IronPython!  Not only would we get "real" threads and get to back down
> from all of these "multiprocessing" experiments I have been doing
> (because, wow, secondary processes are *heavyweights* under Windows!),
> but we'd be able to interoperate with .NET and stuff.  Plus then I would
> have a project that let me play with IronPython like the other cool
> kids. :-)


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